HSM 2015 #4: 1779 Virginia Regimental Coat

I struggled with an appropriate project for HSM #4 (War & Peace) until the perfect opportunity fell into my lap. My boyfriend has been in need of a properly fitted regimental since he started reenacting and decided to pony up the money for a Henry Cooke workshop that was being held in Winchester. Which of course really meant that I was taking the Henry Cooke workshop. I have to give him credit here though; he did quite a bit of the grunt work on the internal seams.

With “A Call to Arms” at Mt. Vernon scheduled for the first weekend of May it was the perfect deadline. I finished putting on the buttons the Wednesday before. Confession: the buttonholes have not been finished. They’re not even whipped. But the coat is 100% functional!

Regimental Coat Front

The front of the coat.

Regimental Turnbacks

The turnbacks

Regimental Coat Back

The back of the coat.

collar detail

Collar detail

lapel detail

Lapel detail

lapel button attachment

Button attachment on the lapels. I threaded 1/4″ twill tape through the buttons to secure them.

welt pocket detail

Welt pocket detail in the lining.

buttonhole tool

My new buttonhole cutter! Purchased from Jim Hoffman of Hoffman’s Forge.

Mt Vernon

Did we score the perfect spot at Mt. Vernon or what? It pays to be the organizers…

The Challenge: War and Peace


Pattern: Henry Cook

Year: Based on the 1779 Regulations

Notions: 32 buttons, about 2.5 yards of 1/4″ twill tape, 4 hooks and eyes

How historically accurate is it? 98%. I’m leaving 2% for the fact that none of the materials were actually made in the 1770s. It’s made of Kochan & Phillips wool broadcloth, the lining is wool serge and linen, and everything is hand sewn.

Hours to complete: Approximately 20 hours. I have about 10 left for the buttonholes.

First worn: 3/4 May for “A Call to Arms” at Mt. Vernon

Total cost: Nothing. I was merely the sewing lackey.


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